Metro Moneywise was registered in 1990 as an employee-based credit union for Rochdale’s council workers. It now serves over 5,000 members from numerous employers across the North West.
How it began
November 1988 was when employees were invited to a presentation at the Champness hall on Drake Street by Man and wife team from Merseyside buses The attendance was by about 15 people from across the departments.
How it came about: – In 1989 a steering group was formed study sessions were held with Len Nuttall at the beginning and later Lesley Bird both from ABCUL (Association of British Credit Unions).
The concept of a credit union for council workers was born.
The Steering Group: – Metro Rochdale Employees Credit Union
At meeting in the town hall someone said let us throw a pound in the kitty and get this ball rolling. The President and treasurer were proposed all voted and others took up positions for the various committees.
We now had a basis to practice amongst ourselves the task of starting the Credit Union
The Study Group: – There was a lot of support for the credit union and two attempts were required for the signing as not all Study group members could turn up for the signing due to work commitments and Holidays
Metro Rochdale Employees Credit Union was registered in August 1990 No.213C. Since then the credit union has grown significantly in terms of membership, loans to members, interest earned, dividends, assets and general reserves.
Presentation to Founders at Castleton Comrades Club. Jim Dobbin MP Presenting,
Brian Holden Treasurer, Pauline Howarth asst Treasurer,
Julian Waldron Secretary, Jim Clancy Vice president, Marilyn Aldred development worker, Ann Antrobus Treasury Roger Baldry President. Not all could attend.
A year later, Metro Moneywise was on the move to a new office on the 3rd Floor of the Municipal office’s PO BOX 91
The Road to sustainability: – Annual meeting 1991 The early years the credit union auditors were Appleby and Wood of Bolton. 1993 Retired members came under discussion for continued membership alas it was not possible in those early days. 1994 saw the money laundering regulations come in to force and the credit union required a money laundering officer. The AGM that year elected to a change of Auditors. 1995 the auditors were confirmed as Beever & Struthers and have been the auditors ever since. November.
1996 Lorraine Mark-Bell became the Credit Union’s first part time employee. The deregulation bill (Credit Unions) order 1996 came in to being.
The Board would now review lending policy in light of the deregulation. From 1996 to’97and ‘98 the Board of directors worked on a business plan for the next 3 years. Investigate mergers with other Credit Unions. The name Metro Moneywise was chosen in the year. Kirkholt Community Credit Union was supported at this time with training and conference fees. Retired members retain membership (Known as associate members). By 2000 Membership increase with NHS Extra part time employee (Carol), and look to acquire new premises. Safe as houses was one of the first newsletters produced after 1999.
2003 Interest newsletter keeps members informed and Angie is now part of the team
The move to Globe House has been a success and the staff are happy with the facilities
2004 This year we have expanded our services to Rochdale Heywood and Middleton Primary care trust and Pennine acute NHS Hospitals
2005 £1000 Loan available to New Members
Ratio for borrowing increased to 5 times shares + £300
2006 Jan joins the team of employees now to 4.
2007 New logo New Web Site
For the first-time members are able to look up to their account details
Access to all forms calculate cost of loans
2008 Brian Holden Retires as Treasure and John Jones takes up the post Brian was one of the key Founding Fathers of the Credit Union.
Despite the recession hitting the country, Metro Moneywise was still going strong. The credit union declared a dividend of 4% in 2008.
September 2011 Greater Manchester Probation Trust joins Metro Moneywise Despite the recession the dividend paid for 2011was 2.75%
2012 the legislation Reform order comes in to being. Less restrictions for Credit Unions. The board of Directors will keep abreast of the changes and access the benefits in the future
2013 Eligibility for Membership changed to anyone who is employed and whose employer will agree to payroll deduction. Dividend paid at 2.25%
2014 the post of marketing is established and membership has passed the 6000-mark. New loan products have been introduced at various rates of interest below 1.5%. Five of the original Member of the first board are still part of the Board and various committees and attended the 25year celebration on 26th October 2014 held at Rochdale Town hall.
2015 Alex Joins the team of 5 employees and Metro Moneywise celebrates 25 years. Here’s to the next 25 years
2016 Founding member Julian Waldron sadly passed away He like others in the movement is remembered on the ROLL of HONOUR page.
2017 Diane Joins the team as Finance Manager in August and Megan in October as Admin.
30th of November 2017 Lorraine Leaves after 21 years of dedicated service.
October 2018 Ciara Davis Takes the reigns as the first CEO Of Metro Moneywise. Ciara was with Manchester Credit Union for 10 years as a voluntary board member.
2019 The credit union unveiled a fresh new logo to coincide with Ciara’s appointment her ambition is to implement a digital transformation of the credit union’s services make it as easy as possible for new and existing members to engage with the credit union.
2020 With a “Welcome on the Mat” Metro Moneywise saw the launch of a new website as they continued to enhance its digital service to members. The Site has been designed to be as user and mobile friendly as possible with clear navigation throughout. Members who want to look at savings or loans, manage accounts online, or just find out more about the credit union. Paired with its state-of-the-art Nivo app, the new site will make it so much easier for members to get the information they need, manage savings and apply for loans easily. All of this was achieved during the lock-down during March April and May when Covid19 hit the United Kingdom.
The credit union, celebrated its 30th anniversary in October 2020. That’s three decades trading as a successful financial co-operative in Rochdale – the home of the co-operative movement. Fast-forward to 2020 and the credit union has welcomed over 10,000 members, looked after over £10m of savings, lent in excess of £50m and shared more than £2.5m of surplus with members. Based on estimates, the credit union saved members over £12m simply by borrowing from the credit union rather than high-cost lenders.
2021 After 30 years of exceptional leadership Roger Baldry, one of the 22 founder members of Metro Moneywise Credit Union stepped down from his role as Chair of the Board of Directors. Roger has been Chair since 1990 but it was 1988 when the idea was first floated the credit union first began trading in October 1990.
Roger is succeeded by Wendy McDermott who originally worked for Rochdale council for over 20 years before moving to the Probation Service where she has also worked for 20 years. Wendy has been on the Board on and off since 1996. She was elected in 2021 by the board as chair.
Vice-Chair Geoff Livesey sadly passed away in January 2021 after a period of illness. Geoff joined the credit union in 1996 and was a popular and influential member of the Board. He was a keen rugby player a queens scout with 1st Rochdale scout group. A trade Union Rep working for Highways department of Rochdale council and later Rochdale Bouroughwide Housing where he gave many a presentation on be half of the credit union to new starters.
The credit union moved office to Lock 50, Oldham Road, Rochdale, OL16 5RD. It is much more cost effective use of members money now that staff are working more flexibly from home and from the office. Also in April 2022 a member of staff Angie retired after 20 years followed by Abida who is welcomed to the team. In Early 2022 the credit union launched there own Metro Moneywise Credit Union app. The app will allow staff to roll out new features all the time and therefore continually improve the digital offer to members. Members will be able to see all their account information and in time will also be able to do their credit union business on the app.
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